Madrona Farmers Market Opening Soon

Madrona Farmers MarketSeattle’s most famed farmers market is of course the Pike Place Market which Seattleites have frequented for over 100 years.  But there are also many local farmers markets that consistently served our neighborhoods for over 20 years now.  Fremont Market started in 1990 and several sister neighborhood markets have sprung up since.  And those are not the only neighborhood markets around – click this link to see more Seattle neighborhood markets.

Madrona Farmers Market tradition is not nearly as old as Pike Place Market or Fremont Market, nonetheless, nearby residents look forward to it opening from spring through summer.  Madrona Farmers Market opens Friday, May 20th and will take place every Friday through September from 3PM to 7 PM.  The market is located in the north parking lot of Grocery Outlet and will have everything from fresh produce, flowers, organic meat, to homemade pasta.  Please shop Madrona Farmers Market and support your local vendors.

Side Note:  Walking around the Madrona neighborhood, you might have notice signs for a farmers market stapled on telephone poles.  If you do not look closely you might mistake these as announcements for the opening of the Madrona Farmers Market.  They are actually for the new Othello Market which is an indoor, year-round market that is located in Rainier Valley south of Seward Park.  To learn more about Othello Market click the link.

Catch My Article in the Madrona Newsletter

Madrona NewsI recently wrote an article in the April edition of the Madrona Newsletter about Molly Moon’s coming to Madrona.  I have also blogged about Molly Moon’s coming to the neighborhood as well.  The article is different so if you are not a Madrona resident who receives the newsletter in the mail, pick up a free copy at one of the local Madrona restaurants or shops and check out the article.  The newsletter also has a lot of other articles about the current on goings in the Madrona neighborhood so it is perfect for both long time Madrona resident as well as other Seattleites.

Madrona Home Sales 1st Quarter 2011

Madrona Real EstateThe first quarter home sales in Seattle’s Madrona neighborhood look, I think, pretty good.  I checked on the Northwest Multiple Listing Service (NWMLS) and compared the 1st quarter sales in 2011 versus 2010 for Madrona.  I noticed the NWMLS defines the Madrona neighborhood slightly different than how I think of Madrona.  For example per the NWMLS, a sale on Florence Ct is considered Madrona when I would consider it in Denny Blaine.  Looking at the legal description, the NWMLS is technically correct since Florence Court is in the “Waddell’s Madrona Park” Addition. Either way, no matter how you define Madrona, the numbers from the NWMLS give some insight into the Madrona real estate market.

At first glance, the 1st quarter of 2010 looks better than 2011.  There were less sales in Madrona in the 1st quarter of 2011 than last year (12 versus 14).  In addition, the highest sale in Madrona in the 1st quarter of 2011 was $1,150,000 and in 2010 the highest price for the same time period was $1,369,000.  In fact, 4 Madrona homes sold for over million dollars in 1Q 2010 while 2 Madrona homes sold in the 1Q of 2011.  Thus the average sale price in Madrona in 2010 was higher ($720,091 versus $669,040).  But looking at the numbers more closely some interesting things pop out.  For example, the median sales price was higher in 1Q 2011 as compared to 2010 by quite a large margin ($713,250 versus $517,500).  On top of that, the average price per square foot was much higher in 2011 ($299.32 sq/ft vs $251.59 sq/ft).  Also, the average time on market was much less in 2011; 64 days as compared to 102 days in 2010.  So while it is hard to see any significant trends with only 12 sales in 1Q 2011 and 14 sales in 1Q 2010, the home sales in Madrona do seem to show that the Madrona real estate market is healthy.

If you are interested to learn more about the Madrona real estate market, contact me, Kristine Losh, through my Ewing & Clark agent page.

Statistics not compiled or published by the Northwest Multiple Listing Service.

Where the Rivalry Began…

UW CrewThis weekend will be the 100th regular season dual race between University of Washington and Cal when the two schools’ varsity eight boats line up.  The race, that will begin this Saturday around 10:20 AM at the Montlake Cut, is one of the most storied rivalries in college rowing and it all began in 1903 just down the hill from Madrona at Leschi Park (map).

Back then Seattle was still a young city, and Madrona was even a younger neighborhood.  Madrona, which was platted in 1889, was considered way out of town and the developer had to create a trolley car and entertainment at the beach to draw prospective residents to the neighborhood.  (Click here to read the history of Madrona.)  A little over a decade later, in 1901, the University of Washington formed their crew team and in 1903 Cal came to Seattle by steamship to race them.  I can only assume Cal, who had a crew team since 1868 was the favorite to win.  The race was delayed because the UW equipment failed, and the Cal crew did a 1.5 mile exhibition run in which I assume went in front of Madrona since that is where more people would have lived.  Eventually, UW fixed their equipment and won the race and the rivalry began.

This weekend, UW and Cal will meet for the 100th time.  Cal, ranked #2 nationally, will arrive by plane and with a team made up of people from across the globe, facing the #1 Huskies ….. and all of this started 108 years ago on the shores of Lake Washington in front of the Madrona / Leschi area.

Click here for tomorrow’s schedule of crew events.

Pizza in Madrona Right Now

Zaw PizzaI have been blogging a lot about pizza restaurants coming to Madrona.  I recently wrote a blog about Pritty Boys Pizzeria taking over the old Dulces spot and rumors of Zaw coming to Madrona, but really if you want a pizza today you have to go no further than Madrona Ale House.  Madrona Ale House, which is a very kid friendly restaurant, has a great selection of pizza and pizza’s best friend: beer.  So while I know everyone is excited for the new pizza restaurant(s) that are coming to Madrona, don’t forget Madrona Ale House – the oven is already hot and they are just waiting to throw your pizza order in.

Bloody Marys at the Hi Spot


Hi Spot in Madrona

This past year, the Hi Spot got their liquor license so they could serve cocktails with their delicious breakfasts, brunches, and lunches.  Recently, with a gentle twist of my arm, I was at the Hi Spot and tried the Bloody Mary.  They told me it was good…and they were not lying.  It was spicy with a nice thick mixture.  I did not pry too much for the ingredients, but you definitely need to try it if you are a Bloody Mary fan…..especially if you find yourself in Madrona on sunny Seattle weekend morning.

UPDATE:  Last month, I blogged about the umbrellas coming soon to the Hi Spot outdoor patio.  The plan is to get two large umbrellas that cover the entire patio and allow the Hi Spot to keep it open up to 7 months a year (not 9 as I previously wrote).  Mike, the Hi Spot owner, told me that it now looks like the umbrellas won’t be here until June at the earliest.  But since then I did come across an interview of Mike from last year discussing the umbrellas, so it may be delayed again.  Either way, the Hi Spot deck will open when the weather warms.  So personally, I am looking forward to summer in Seattle and enjoying the Hi Spot deck with or without the large umbrellas….the Bloody Mary will have to be a game day decision.

Get Your Madrona Mayfair T-Shirt Hot Off the (Cafe) Press

Madrona Mayfair T-ShirtAnd the winner is…..Sydney Mansavage.  Sydney won the Madrona Mayfair t-shirt design contest and the winning design is now available on everything from t-shirts, to sweatshirts, to onsies, to tote bags, and stainless water bottles on the Cafe Press website.  The winning design was selected at the last Madrona Community Council meeting and the voting was very close.  Several designs were vying to be the official design for the upcoming Madrona Mayfair but Sydney’s design won.  Please go to the above Cafe Press website link and order your t-shirt in time for Mayfair which takes place this May 14th.  The money goes to help pay for Mayfair with about $1,200 needed to reach this year’s goal to fund the event.

Madrona Community Council

Madrona Community CouncilThe Madrona Community Council has been working for decades to make Seattle’s Madrona neighborhood an even better community to live, work, shop, and enjoy.  For example, in 1979 the Madrona Community Council dedicated the park at 34th Avenue and E. Pike Street the Alvin Larkins Park to honor a long-term Madrona resident. The all-volunteer, non-profit organization does everything from put on Madrona Mayfair each spring, print a newsletter to let the resident  know of the neighborhood’s happenings, help organize the flower baskets that beautify the Madrona Business District centered around 34th and Union, put together the bonfire at Madrona Beach during the Christmas Ship visit, plus much more.

The Madrona Community Council meets the 1st Tuesday of every month other than in July and August.  Meetings are held at the Madrona Playground shelter house (next to the tennis courts) at 34th and E. Spring.  The meetings begin at 7:15 PM and usually last between hour to an hour and a half.  The meetings are open to all.  In fact, the Madrona Community Council is always looking for participation.  So whether you want to come to one or all meetings, feel free to come by.

If you want to learn more about the Madrona Community Council – whether to sign up to join their Google Group, to contact a council member, to review their bylaws, or just have questions – click the link to their official Madrona Community Council website.

Little Known Madrona School: Harvard Avenue School

Madrona SchoolHarvard Avenue School is a Seattle toddler, preschool, and pre-kindergarten school which began on Capitol Hill on, yes you guessed it, Harvard Avenue.  That school still remains on Capitol Hill, but the Harvard Avenue School has expanded to have a toddler program in Madison Park and another location in Madrona on the 1600 block of Martin Luther King.  The Madrona school has preschool and pre-kindergarten classes.   Following is how Harvard Avenue describes itself:

Harvard Avenue School seeks to provide an educational experience that combines loving care with social, emotional, academic, and artistic development.
A carefully balanced and supervised program has been designed for our students. Children experience individualized instruction, group learning experiences, art, dance, french, music, language, math, science, geography, and outdoor play.

Children can attend school two days (Tues/Thurs), three days (Mon/Wed/Fri), or five days (Mon-Fri) a week.  Classes are from 9 am to 1 pm.

Harvard Avenue has the typical school year from September to June, but they also offer summer camps.  Those are also offer two, three, or five days a week and are from 9 am to 1 pm, but unlike the school year they are offered as two week increments.  The camps run June 30 to August 26th.  I believe the camps are offered at both the Capitol Hill and Madrona schools.

Descriptions of each session are below:

Session One: June 30 – July 15 (no camp 7/4 & 7/5)

Camp Theme: Around the World and Our Home Town

We’ll also focus on our own continent and create art projects based on our culture and those that we “visit” during our camp day.  We’ll visit each of the seven continents in these two weeks and learn about the people, animals, and customs that you find there.  We’ll also focus on world music and have a world dance party!

Session Two: July 18 – July 29

Camp Theme: Mini Mad Scientist & Creative Chefs/Baking

It’s the kids’ turn to mix some potions.  . . We’ll be doing lots of experiments this session – working with magnets, floating and sinking, mixing colors and formulas.  We will explore our five senses and have some taste and smell tests that will be lots of fun.  We’ll also do some cooking and baking

The campers will make special baking projects and also create some cool “pretend foods” out of salt dough.  We’ll also use play money to have a bake sale with our creations.  Color mixing and play dough making will also be enjoyed.

Session Three: August 1 – 12

Camp Theme: Box Town, Music Madness & Big Messy Art!

Budding engineers and artists will love this session.   A box can be anything!  Each student is encouraged to bring at least one big and small box to help us create something for our “box town.”  Will they create a house, a store, or a rocket ship?  Can they turn their boxes into musical instruments?  We’ll take inspiration from the book Roxaboxen and have lots of fun!

We’ll  also explore various music styles and explore art through color, shapes, techniques, and form.  We’ll create beautiful works of art with a variety of media.  Splash some paint on some paper Pollack style, and learn from the masters!

Session Four: August 15 – 26

Camp Theme: Space Camp!  Blast off and learn about our galaxy in this fun summer session.  The kids will create jet packs and rockets, solar system  mobiles, and paper mache planets.  Listen at home for your child’s own rollicking rendition of School House Rock’s “Inter Planet Janet” and just wait to see how much your little astronaut will learn!  10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Blast off!

To find out more or to register, contact Harvard Avenue School.

Shocking! Street Light in Seattle’s Central District Gives Off Voltage

LightningBack in November a dog on Queen Anne lost its life when electrocuted by a streetlight – click here to read more blogs on the streetlight issue.  Since then Seattle City Light had hired two companies to inspect every metal streetlight pole (20,000) and every ground cover plate (10,000) in Seattle.  The inspection found other streetlights emitting electricity including a metal light post in the Central District on 23rd and Union.  Shockingly (pun intended) the problem still exists.  A woman was walking her dog in the Central District on April 4th when her dog reacted strangely after sniffing a pole on the corner of 23rd and Marion.  The woman reported it and the metal light post was found to be emitting the same amount of voltage that killed the dog on Queen Anne.

A car hit the Central District pole in August, requiring it to be replaced. According to reports, the improper installation of the new pole in January caused the voltage problem.  I presume the pole was installed after the two inspection companies had already tested the area – which makes sense since my blog referenced above about the pole that was discovered on 23rd and Union was from December 16th.

As a precaution, Seattle City Light is checking every metal street light that was damaged and repaired in the last year (approximately 60).